Perth Glory manager Tony Popovic warned his players against getting starstruck ahead of Saturday’s friendly with Manchester United.
Fresh from winning the A-League Premiers for the first time in history, Perth Glory will be put to the test against United at home this weekend.
For Popovic, though, the main problem will be in preventing his squad from getting starstruck by the presence of United. Many of the players, in fact, are long-time supporters of the 20-time English champions.
Among the Reds Devils fans in the Perth Glory team are Popovic’s own two sons.
“I’m sure that there is time to admire them and consider who you played against after the game,” said Popovic, according to Goal.
“But we don’t want them doing that during the match.
“We’ve got players here in our group that get disappointed when Manchester United doesn’t win, and they stay up and watch the games.
“I’ve got one of my sons (Gabriel) that does not miss a game of Manchester United. That just shows how big and special they are as a club.
“It (playing against United) is something these players haven’t experienced and may not experience again. So you want to make the most of it. You don’t want to get stage fright on the day.”
“I really want the players to be relaxed and enjoy it and also be focused and go out there and show our football.”
Perth Glory will have to be at the top of their game for the encounter considering United boast an almost full-strength squad.
The only absentees for manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are Alexis Sanchez (on holiday), Fred and Matteo Darmian (both for personal reasons).
It does remain unclear, though, whether Solskjaer will play Real Madrid target Paul Pogba or Romelu Lukaku, who is on Inter Milan’s radar.